Get our newsletters
Letters to the Herald

Lambertville can’t stop flooding alone


In the his Jan. 18, State of the City address, Lambertville Mayor Andrew Nowick provided various types of information. Three points stood out.

First, our city fiscal position shows some stabilization which was attributed largely to significant tax increases. Tax increases here are among the highest in a high-tax state.

Second, the city is “undertaking a stormwater utility feasibility study” and a “focus group,” whose members were selected by the mayor to meet starting this month.

Third, according to the address, city management of stormwater involves “13 miles of roads, three creeks, 1,800 residential units, scores of businesses, more than 540 storm inlets and outfalls, un-examined miles of underground culverts and pipes, the 100- and 500-year flood plains, impervious parking lots, dozens of regulatory requirements, ongoing cross jurisdictional issues, a DPW crew of eight whose primary role is trash and recycling, and a part-time mayor.”

Before plunging ahead — like floodwater — here are some key facts.

No municipality in New Jersey has created a stormwater utility even though flooding has and likely will occur in many parts of the state, causing serious problems for municipalities larger than Lambertville.

Lambertville is one square mile in a watershed of more than 13,000 square miles.

Water runs downhill. Our city is at the bottom of that hill.

Lambertville cannot solve these water issues by itself. There has to be a regional approach with the towns around us.

The current apparent focus is on a new bureaucracy. It would cost a great deal, would not be answerable to the public, and would not create regional solutions. Caution!

Judith Gleason, Lambertville

Join our readers whose generous donations are making it possible for you to read our news coverage. Help keep local journalism alive and our community strong. Donate today.